Royal Navy contract

Johnson unveils £1.25bn frigate boost for Scottish shipyard

Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier

Rosyth has been completing work on aircraft carriers

Shipyard workers’ jobs in Scotland and Northern Ireland will be secured by the awarding of a £1.25bn contract to build five frigates for the Royal Navy.

The Rosyth dockyard in Fife will share the work with Harland & Wolff in Belfast which will be thrown a lifeline after falling into administration. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to make a statement today.

It is also expected to provide work for Ferguson Marine Engineering, which is being taken over by the Scottish government after collapsing in August.

A consortium led by defence group Babcock International has secured the work for the Type 31 frigates which will help safeguard 2,500 jobs as part of a pledge by Mr Johnson to restore “British influence and excellence across the world’s oceans”.

It had been expected that Ben Wallace, the defence secretary, would make the announcement at the DSEI arms fair this week, but Downing Street is keen to grab some positive news following a series of negative headlines and setbacks.

Work will commence before the end of this year with the first of at least five ships ready by 2023 as part of a pledge to expand the Royal Navy’s fleet over the next 20 years.

British shipbuilders BAE Systems, Babcock and Atlas Elektronik UK were on the shortlist for the contract to replace Type 23 frigates. 

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